Scoliosis is an abnormal curvature of the spine that is usually seen in children between 10-15 years of age during the growth spurt just prior to the onset of puberty. About 2-4% of people in the US are affected by this condition. Scoliosis Awareness Month is celebrated in the month of June to help raise awareness regarding the diagnosis and treatment of scoliosis.
Here are 5 interesting facts about scoliosis:
- Scoliosis is not caused due to bad posture. The most common type of scoliosis is idiopathic scoliosis, which means scoliosis due to unknown causes. Although the exact cause of scoliosis is unclear, it may be caused due to a combination of genetic factors and environmental triggers such as trauma, malnutrition, infection, or hormone changes.
- There is a 30% chance that you might have scoliosis if someone in your family has it. In the early stages of the disease, symptoms may be mild and difficult to identify. You should pay close attention to visual cues such as uneven posture, a shoulder blade sticking out, one hip being more pronounced, or clothes hanging unevenly on the body.
- Girls are more at risk for developing scoliosis. According to research studies, scoliosis occurs 10 times more often in girls than boys above the age of 10. The chances of the spinal curvature worsening are also 8 times more likely in girls.
- Most types of scoliosis are mild and do not require treatment with braces or surgery. Your doctor will usually recommend checkups every 4-5 months to monitor the condition if scoliosis is mild. Early intervention with a program of exercises is one of the most exciting advances in effective scoliosis management.
- Early detection is the key. Currently, less than half the states in the US require scoliosis screening in schools. If scoliosis is left undetected, it can lead to chronic back pain and interfere with heart and lung function. It is vital for parents, teachers, and healthcare professionals to be taught to identify early signs of scoliosis.
Visit your Scoliosis & Spine Correction Clinic if you notice signs of scoliosis in your child. The sooner the condition is diagnosed, the better are the chances of effective treatment.